Massive test ahead against leaders for Hucknall

Sam Johnson - happy to take on leaders Cuckney as underdogs.Sam Johnson - happy to take on leaders Cuckney as underdogs.
Sam Johnson - happy to take on leaders Cuckney as underdogs.
Hucknall face a huge test against Nottinghamshire Premier League leaders Cuckney this weekend as they try to bounce back from the disappointment of Saturday's five wicket defeat at Wollaton.

Still in the relegation zone, Hucknall saw the Wollaton game as a realistic chance of points but were easily turned over.

However, captain Sam Johnson said being underdogs against Cuckney would be a help to them.

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“Cuckney are playing brilliant cricket at the moment,” he said.

“So in some ways it is a bad fixture for us to have.

“But in other ways it is a nice one as we can play against them with no pressure, express ourselves, and enjoy playing cricket.

“They are expected to win. They have multiple former winners of the Premier League and multiple players who have been real stars in the league for a number of years.

“The pressure is all on them which suits us really.

“We are by no means counting ourselves out as, on our day, we know we can beat anyone.

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“Cuckney are very much favourites and we need to give it a real good go and show a bit of pride in our performance.”

Electing to bat, Hucknall, who were without professionals Sol Budinger and Waseem Fazal, were all out for 141 in 43.3 overs.

Nolan Benson hit 31 and Johnson 26 with Zain Latif claiming 4-30 and James Cox 3-33.

Wollaton reached 142-5 in 36.2 overs, pro star opener Hassan Azad with 72 not out, including 11 fours, from 108 balls.

William Spray took 2-34.

“It was really disappointing,” said Johnson.

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“Obviously it was a big game in our season. We didn't have either of our pros which doesn't help you.

“Sol was playing for Notts and Waassem had a family bereavement. We were also missing Sam King who had a school game.

“But we were too poor for too long in the game. We played too much poor cricket. We didn't deserve to come away with anything more than what we got.

“It probably wasn't our worst performance of the season, but it was definitely the most disappointing as we saw it as a real opportunity to try to get some points on the board.

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“We had a poor period in our innings where we went from 89-4 to 116-8 which never helps.

“It is so frustrating. A lot of it is down to me. I played a poor shot to start it all off.

“To be fair to them, their pro, who they rely on to score the lion's share of their runs, then did exactly that. We didn't have the answers to get him out.”